Sometimes When We Touch

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"Sometimes When We Touch"
Sometimes When We Touch - Dan Hill.jpg
Single by Dan Hill
from the album Longer Fuse
B-side"Still Not Used To"
ReleasedNovember 1977[1]
GenreSoft rock[2][3]
Length4:05 (Album Version)
3:31 (Single Edit)
LabelGRT (Canada)
20th Century Fox (USA/UK)
Songwriter(s)Dan Hill (lyrics)
Barry Mann (music)
Producer(s)Matthew McCauley, Fred Mollin

"Sometimes When We Touch" is a 1977 ballad written by Dan Hill (lyrics) and Barry Mann (music) on the album Longer Fuse. It was first released as a single by Canadian pop rock artist Dan Hill. His version of the song became the most successful and his biggest hit. Since its original release "Sometimes When We Touch" has been released by several different artists in various musical formats.

Dan Hill version[edit]

Hill was inspired to write "Sometimes When We Touch" from a previous relationship. In an interview with CBN News in 2017, Hill explained that the song was about being in love with someone who did not have similar feelings for him, "She was interested in another man, so that was breaking my heart. So I thought I needed to write a song that would capture her and win her over—that would be so passionate in a sense that she’d see that I’m the only guy for her."[4]

"Sometimes When We Touch" was first recorded in 1977. Musicians included Bobby Ogdin (piano), Larrie Londin (drums), Bob Mann (guitar), Don Potter (guitar), Tom Szczesniak (bass). The record was produced by Fred Mollin and Matthew McCauley, recorded at Manta Sound, Toronto.

It was Hill's biggest hit, peaking at #3 on the United States Billboard Hot 100 and #10 on the Adult Contemporary chart.[5] The song was issued on Hill's studio album Longer Fuse.

Mark Gray and Tammy Wynette version[edit]

"Sometimes When We Touch"
Single by Mark Gray and Tammy Wynette
from the album This 'Ol Piano or Sometimes When We Touch
B-side"You're Gonna Be the Last Love"
ReleasedJanuary 1985 (1985-01)
Producer(s)Steve Buckingham
Tammy Wynette singles chronology
"Lonely Heart"
"Sometimes When We Touch"
"You Can Lead a Heart to Love (But You Can't Make It Fall)"
Mark Gray singles chronology
"Diamond in the Dust"
"Sometimes When We Touch"
"Smooth Sailing (Rock in the Road)"

In 1985, "Sometimes When We Touch" was notably covered by American country music artists Mark Gray and Tammy Wynette. The tune was recorded as a duet between the artists and originally released as a single the same year.

The song was recorded in November 1984 and was produced by Steve Buckingham. It was released as a single in January 1985 via Columbia Records. The B-side of the record was a solo recording by Mark Gray entitled "You're Gonna Be the Last Love".[16] The single reached number 6 on the Billboard Hot Country Singles chart[17] and number 25 on the Canadian Country chart.[18] The song became Wynette's first top ten hit since 1982's "Another Chance" and Gray's fourth top ten hit as a solo artist.[17]

The song was issued on both Gray and Wynette's solo studio albums. "Sometimes When We Touch" first appeared on Gray's album This 'Ol Piano in 1984. It was the only duet recording featured on the album and was his second studio album release.[19] It was then issued on Tammy Wynette's 1985 studio album, also called Sometimes When We Touch. The track was also the only duet recording on Wynette's studio release.[20]

Track listings[edit]

7" vinyl single[16]
  • "Sometimes When We Touch" (Mark Gray and Tammy Wynette) – 3:37
  • "You're Gonna Be the Last Love" (Mark Gray) – 2:37


Chart (1985) Peak
US Hot Country Singles (Billboard)[17] 6
CAN Country Singles (RPM)[18] 24

Other versions[edit]

Tina Turner recorded a version for her 1978 album, Rough. An Estonian language version of the song (entitled "Puudutus" ("Touch")) also exists. Often performed as a duet, the song has been covered by Koit Toome and Maarja-Liis Ilus among others. On Toome's acoustic greatest hits album, Allikas, the song is present as a solo piece with the tune credited to 'H. Dan'.

UK dance singer Newton also took the song into the top 40 in the UK (peaking at #32 in February 1996) and to #5 in Australia, also in 1996. Newton's version went Gold in Australia.

In 2008, Daniel Evans performed the song at his first audition on series 5 of the X Factor (UK) bringing judge Cheryl Cole to tears after he sang in memory of his wife, who died shortly after childbirth. The clip has had nearly 20 million views on YouTube. He subsequently released the song on his debut album No Easy Way in 2010.

The ska band Five Iron Frenzy also did a cover of this song as part of a "Medley" during their farewell tour in 2004. There is also a version recorded in 1980 by Cleo Laine and James Galway. Tammy Wynette covered the song in 1985 with country-pop singer Mark Gray. Their duet version peaked at No. 6 on the country singles chart in 1985. British singer Rod Stewart recorded the song for his 1996 album If We Fall in Love Tonight. Veteran British entertainer Tommy Steele recorded this on his Family Album.

Manny Pacquiao sang this song[21] on the November 3, 2009 showing of the Jimmy Kimmel Live! show. This was Pacquiao's first guest appearance on an American late night TV talk show and his first singing performance on American TV. He would later record this song in April 2011 as a single which reached number 19 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart.[citation needed]

In August 2012, Dream Theater performed an impromptu short cover in Rio de Janeiro.[22]

"När vi rör varann"[edit]

There is a Swedish version of the lyrics, called "När vi rör varann" ("When We Touch Each Other"), written by Ingela "Pling" Forsman and recorded by Kikki Danielsson in 1980 and Susanne Alfvengren in 1984. "När vi rör varann" has become the signature song for Susanne Alfvengren. The Monica Silverstrand version reached the Svensktoppen from 24 February-2 March 1980, peaking at number 6.

Swedish Opera singer Loa Falkman covered this song on his album Symfonin in 1990.

"เงียบๆคนเดียว (Alone Quietly)"[edit]

There is a Thai song using the melody of this song, lyrics were written in 1989 by See Fah and performed by Thongchai McIntyre in his album "Boomerang" released in 1990. This song is about the failed relationship of one couple, the man wanted the woman to leave him alone and forget everything about him when she started her new relationship.

"Without Words"[edit]

Chinese lyrics were written for Barry Mann's music by Beijing-based director Chen Peng for his gay relationship series Like Love (2014) and Nobody Knows But Me (2015). A music video of this version was released in 2014,[23] and another music video was released in 2015 with the words sung by Chen Peng and the actors Kong Chuinan, Huang Lige, Liu Mei Lu, Dong Yufeng and Ma Yu.[24]

Cultural influence[edit]

The song has been used in numerous films, television programs and commercials since its initial release. Among the more notable usages are the 1999 film Superstar, a 2003 GEICO commercial, the 2008 film Tropic Thunder (it's agent Rick Peck's ringtone), and the 2014 Simpsons episode The Yellow Badge of Cowardge.

In 1996, This Hour Has 22 Minutes ran a comedic sketch in which Canada was taken over by terrorists who in turn were promptly defeated when the Canadian Armed Forces deployed the song as their secret weapon. At the time, Hill was making television appearances to promote his new album I'm Doing Fine, and Pamela Wallin confronted Hill (who had not yet seen it) with the sketch on live national television.[25]


  1. ^ "Sometimes When We Touch". Retrieved 2019-02-08.
  2. ^ "The 10 Ickiest Soft-Rock Hits of the '70s - Oldies Music". 2014-04-03. Archived from the original on July 11, 2014. Retrieved 2014-05-22.
  3. ^ "VH1's 40 Most Softsational Soft-Rock Songs". Stereogum. SpinMedia. May 31, 2007. Retrieved July 31, 2016.
  4. ^ "Dan Hill reveals sad story behind 'Sometimes When We Touch'". CBN News. Retrieved 29 December 2019.
  5. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2002). Top Adult Contemporary: 1961-2001. Record Research. p. 115.
  6. ^ "Forum - 1970 (ARIA Charts: Special Occasion Charts)". Archived from the original on 2016-06-02. Retrieved 2016-12-16.
  7. ^ "Sometimes When We Touch". Charts NZ. 1978. Retrieved 20 May 2011.
  8. ^ "SA Charts 1965–March 1989". Retrieved 5 September 2018.
  9. ^ "Dan Hill Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard.
  10. ^ "Dan Hill Chart History (Adult Contemporary)". Billboard.
  11. ^ "Forum - 1970 (ARIA Charts: Special Occasion Charts)". Archived from the original on 2016-06-02. Retrieved 2016-10-12.
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2018-09-29. Retrieved 2016-12-17.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  16. ^ a b "Mark Gray and Tammy Wynette -- "Sometimes When We Touch" (Vinyl, 1985)". Discogs. Retrieved 29 December 2019.
  17. ^ a b c Whitburn, Joel (2004). The Billboard Book Of Top 40 Country Hits: 1944-2006, Second edition. Record Research. p. 491.
  18. ^ a b "Item Display - RPM - Library and Archives Canada". 1985-05-25. Retrieved 2019-04-10.
  19. ^ "Mark Gray -- This 'ol Piano (1984, Vinyl)". Discogs. Retrieved 29 December 2019.
  20. ^ "Tammy Wynette -- Sometimes When We Touch' (1985, Vinyl)". Discogs. Retrieved 29 December 2019.
  21. ^ Video on YouTube
  22. ^ Video on YouTube
  23. ^ Video on YouTube
  24. ^ Video on YouTube
  25. ^ Hill, Dan (January 14, 2010). "You'll never guess what Dan Hill thinks of his own song". Macleans. St. Joseph Communications. Retrieved 27 October 2020.

External links[edit]